Redshirt-senior guard Ramone Moore scored his 1,000th career point in the Owls’ road loss, 77-65, to the Texas Longhorns today at Frank Erwin Special Events Center, Austin, Texas. Moore, who finished with 13 points in the game, became the 47th player to reach the milestone in program history.
After leading at the half, 34-31, the Owls (6-3) seemingly lost their momentum, as the Longhorns (9-2) outscored the Cherry and White by a score of 46-31 in the second half. Both Texas and Temple entered the contest with win streaks of six and three games, respectively.
“I thought Texas was terrific in the second half,” said coach Fran Dunphy at the post-game press conference. “We got off a little bit by trying to rush something, which we cannot do with a program like this. I thought we did a very good job in the first half with keeping our poise and concentration, something we did not do in the second half.”
Senior guard Juan Fernandez struggled to find an offensive rhythm, shooting 2-8 from the floor and 1-4 behind the arc, finishing with five points and four assists. Fernandez was three points off pace from reaching the 1,000 point mark for his career as well, which would have also been the first time in program history that two Owls reached 1,000 career points in the same game.
The Owls were out-rebounded by the Longhorns, especially on the offensive boards, as Texas recorded 25 more rebounds with a 17-3 advantage on the offensive end. The Longhorns also posted up in the paint efficiently as they recorded a 42-22 edge against the Owls, while boasting a 21-4 difference in second-chance points awarded.
“Obviously, we were a little bit outsized but that is not nearly the excuse we need,” Dunphy said. “We were just not as tough or aggressive as they were.”
“They were just tougher than us in the second half,” Moore added. “The amount of offensive rebounds helped them with that.”
Junior guard Khalif Wyatt scored a game-high 24 points and notched two steals. The Owls shot nearly 52 percent in the first half, but went cold in the second half with a 37.5 field goal percentage compared to the Longhorns’ 55.6 percentage.
When asked if he was surprised the Longhorns came back in the second half to win, Wyatt said no because the team scouted its opponents’ young talent.
“These guys are getting better game-by-game, especially the freshmen,” Wyatt said. “They came out in this game, played to get a lead and maintained it.”
The Owls will remain in the lonestar state for their next game against Rice for a 9 p.m. (EST) tipoff on Monday in Houston.
Connor Showalter can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.